A customer’s journey never ends at the time of purchase. There are a few things to consider that will help to enhance the customer experience and build loyalty. The most important consideration is the after-sales service. N Y Patil, managing director of Kyoritsu Electric India Pvt Ltd, in an interaction with Baishakhi Dutta of the Electronicsforu.com Network, shares how his organisation has adopted strong after-sales support to stay competitive in their growing PCBA and test equipment business. Excerpts follow…
Q) Tell us a little about your current business model.
Kyoritsu Electric India is a reputed manufacturer for testing fixtures and an industry recognized brand for offering SMT line equipment as well as back end equipment with comprehensive sales and service support.
As an end-to-end supplier of PCBA Testing and SMT turnkey solutions, our core focus is on industries which manufacture quality-oriented electronics required for automobiles, consumer appliances and devices, medical devices, defense and aerospace technology, and others.
Our fully equipped workshop is a hub for the development of ICT testing jigs and function test jigs, with excellent quality to suit each customer’s requirement and is at par with overseas manufacturers’ test jigs.
We further aim to design, develop customized futuristic PCBA test systems and test fixtures as well as offer Industry 4.0-enabled smart SMT line manufacturing system and integrated factory automation solutions, which empower diverse electronic sectors across geographies to craft world-class products with efficacy.
Q) What are the latest product lines you have added?
Kyoritsu Electric India has recently introduced some state-of-the-art hi-tech products for the development of smart factory, in accordance with these trends.
Under our offerings for smart factory solutions, we have lately introduced VSkysoft (China) comprehensive MES for entire factory and Smart Storage System from Robotechnik (China), in which automated storing of SMT rails and complete warehouse management through software linking is maintained with real-time data monitoring.
On similar lines, we have also introduced Vitrox V-one (Malaysia) for SMT lines. These solutions enable you to improve quality and global operational efficiencies, reduce costs of regulatory compliance, accelerate time to market and share real-time data on quality.
As our latest offerings under SMT equipment, we have partnered with Korean giant INOTIS to introduce their fully automated high-speed screen-printer. Again, it’s an industry 4.0 compliant machine, equipped with built-in MES and is widely popular in automotive and mobile phone industries in Korea, China and overseas.
Q) What are your upcoming expansion plans? Are you making any new investment?
We are expanding into new segment of component supplies, under which we are going to ‘stock & sell’ extensive range of active and passive components as per industry needs. The strategy is to have a directional approach to OEMs and R&D teams at a nascent stage, to introduce our products and also look with other clients who are keen to work on cost-cutting for their existing procurement of components.
We have already begun offering some of the active components to automotive EMSes. These components are of specific needs and majorly customized to suit client requirements. We are aiming to add about 8-10 globally competitive principals in the first year.
Of course, there will be an exclusive team dedicated for nurturing this line of product segments under the Kyoritsu portfolio. We are also investing in setting up an R&D and manufacturing unit of FA equipment. In this context, we have plans for establishing our new unit in the Western belt of the country.
Q) Which all principals have you partnered with?
We have been partnering with some of the world-renowned manufacturers of SMT equipment, known for their advanced breed of Industry 4.0 oriented systems. In the SMT domain, we are the exclusive India Sales Channel Partner of global giants like VITROX -Malaysia, INOTIS -Korea, ROBOTECHNIK-China, VSkysoft-China, DCT-Czech Republic to name a few.
With regards to our new components business, we have partnered with CTGen and Dongbu from Korea for LED chips, Advanced Fenghua from China for thick film resistor, Acon from Taiwan for connectors, AOPT from Taiwan for fiber-optics connectors.
Q) What is your business USP over your competitors?
Having passed through stringent ‘critical-to-quality’ check norms of such players, the SMT equipment are tested and validated for their accuracy and high-quality mass production capabilities as per global standards.
Also, these are minimal to maintenance-free equipment hand-picked by us to suit the Indian market needs. Our technically sound service support teams have hands-on training and experience of these equipment over many years and they ensure the upkeep of the machines with their timely maintenance checks at client sites.
Kyoritsu Electric India further aims to design, develop customized futuristic PCBA test systems & test fixtures as well as offer Industry 4.0-enabled smart SMT Line manufacturing system & integrated factory automation solutions; which empower diverse electronic sectors across geographies to craft world-class products with efficacy
Q) What is unique about your test and inspection systems?
All the components and modules of our tester are 100 per cent manufactured in Japan with highly reliable hardware and software, assuring high-quality standards compliance to the end-user.
Kyoritsu ICTs are based on Advanced Patented Solid State Switching Technology, which makes it faster than conventional testers which are based on reed relay technology. Also, our ICTs are flexible to add on customized function tests as per customer requirements and offer In-Circuit Tester (ICT) + Function-Circuit Tester (FCT) combi-testers such as FOCUS4000.
In vision testing and X-ray too, we represent the global giants Vitrox (Malaysia) & Scienscope (USA), who are industry renowned for their state-of-the-art hi-tech vision inspection systems.
The machines in our competition are sold in India by traders who do not support their customers with test-jigs and test programs locally, whereas our fixture house can strongly support such machines jigs requirement.
Q) Alongside the products, do you also provide after-sales support and maintenance services for your test systems?
Yes, we support all our key clients with AMCs. We have a team of highly qualified and experienced engineers, especially in the field of PCBA testing, who are well equipped with the knowledge of ICT + FCT machines application, technical and service support, pin fixture development, fabrication and debugging.
Our robust and experienced technical team for after-sales support can tackle customer queries of any nature. They also provide hands-on training of our equipment to the client’s operations team, in order to enable a smooth and seamless integration of our equipment into their production lines.
Q) Do you conduct any training or hand-holding for students? Is academia an important segment for your business?
Yes definitely, training and skill development is certainly one of our priority agendas. Under the Make-in-India initiative, our team is currently working as a consultant training partner for the ESSCI skill development program, assisting them to set up skill development centers with live SMT lines, across India.
We are also associated with some renowned engineering colleges and universities; wherein we offer workshop-based skill development courses at the academic level itself so that the students are industry-ready once they are out in the job market. This is a win-win offering for both – job seekers as well as job givers.
Q) How has the company progressed in recent years and what growth figures are you estimating for the near future?
The Indian electronics market in past years has been progressing gradually, due to which our current growth rate on an average is ramping up at 30 to 35 per cent per annum, and this is exclusive of our component business. We expect a similar growth rate for the coming 5 years as well.
CKD production is predicted to grow from present 15 to 70 per cent in the next three to four years of time span. This will surely imply to the anticipated steady growth in Kyoritsu’s annual sales turnover as well.
I believe that the future looks good for a well-established company like ours, as India is growing well to meet its own as well as the world’s demand for electronics.
Q) How do you reach out to your customers across different geographical locations within this country?
We have well-established sales and service support teams and offices with strategic presence in the metropolitan cities of New Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore and Chennai. Our customer-centric support teams cater to client service needs Pan-India, round-the-clock. Also, our field engineers ensure weekly visits to local client sites, not just for attending service calls but also for regular assessment of client requirements and developments.
Q) What are the significant challenges that you think Indian SMT players are facing today?
I believe skilled labour and the latest technology are the biggest challenges we are currently facing. In order to adapt to changing technological scenario and make cutting edge innovations, it is quintessential to have a strong repertoire of these two factors.
Also, not much has been done by the government until the recent past to propel the manufacturing sector.
However, the new government has taken certain steps to improvise the conventional policies and bring in new initiatives like National Policy on Electronics (NPE) which aims to create a globally competitive electronics design and manufacturing industry to meet India’s needs and serve the international market.